Scolopendra bites: a report of two cases and review of the literature

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Abstract

Background

Centipedes are arthropods belonging to the class Chilopoda. Approximately 3000 species have been described. Centipedes are found more commonly in tropical and subtropical countries. Centipedes possess venomous fangs. The Scolopendra represent the best-known genus of centipede.

Methods

We describe two cases of severe skin reactions caused by Scolopendra subspinipes bites.

Results

Both patients were bitten on the hand. The clinical picture was characterized by severe erythematous edema. In addition, one patient presented with a blister. Both patients complained of severe pain. Laboratory examinations showed leukocytosis and an increase in erythrocyte sedimentation rate (ESR). Complete remission was achieved within two weeks by means of paracetamol and oral prednisone.

Conclusions

Western dermatologists should be aware of the possibility of severe skin reactions caused by centipede bites.

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